10:23 AM EDT, March 13, 2013
In response to Emmanuel Gray’s Feb. 27, 2013 letter, Helping Hands wants to correct some information.
When the Red Cross decided to limit their presence here and work from Lexington, the local Red Cross board formed Helping Hands to fill the gap and help those in need. A total of $850 was donated by all 12 members (eight of whom still remain on the board) to apply for 501C3 non-profit status.
Helping Hands provides disaster relief, not as first responders, but in conjunction with Red Cross, Salvation Army, and many other local agencies.
In-kind inventory was moved into the first floor (not basement) of the old Presbyterian Church because we were allowed to move in immediately without paying rent. We now pay $125 per month.
The expense of moving in-kind inventory from South Third Street to North Third Street was $548.48. This inventory was referred to as worth $65,000. That amount is questionable, since the actual use of the goods was determined by condition and repairs needed. Volunteers helped pack and move.
The Helping Hands board was presented a budget of $97,480 — $30,000 of which was for the salary of a director. Since we could not afford paid staff or director, we continued as an all volunteer organization. We accepted a more practical budget of $18,000. We do not go to Lexington for donated items due to the expense. Local businesses, organizations and individuals have been generous.
Some who we helped include:
It is a fact that a combination of aid and liaison assistance exceeds $15,000. And our board members have contributed over 1,000 hours of their time in helping those in need.
To quote William Penn, “I expect to pass through this life but once. If, therefore, there be any kindness I can show, or any good thing I can do to help my fellow being, let me do it now, and not defer or neglect it, for I shall not pass this way again.”
Board members and volunteers of Helping Hands do not help people for monetary gain or publicity. We are simply Helping Hands.
Boyle-Mercer Helping Hands Assoc. Inc.
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